Advice - Blue Yeti Buzz/Humm

Hello Guys/Gals I am new to the forums and not sure where to post this or even If I should be posting this on this forum. But here it goes I want to start pod-casting and making videos so I purchased a Blue Yeti microphone when I record there is a distinctive buzz or hum. I have done a lot of researching and reading and there is so much information I can not tell where to start.

Some people say its electromagnetic interference, and to get a 5v powered usb hub and run my blue yeti through that. And others say its vibration from my pc that is causing the hum and I need a shock mount and boom arm and others tell me its ambient noise that is being picked up from down the hall. As you can tell at this point I am so confused what to do or even where to start I just feel like throwing the blue yeti up on ebay and going with another microphone that may be better but then I don’t know what to get since I don’t have a mixing board and can’t afford one so it must be a usb microphone.

here is a test recording of nothing but the background noise.

If you could help I sure would appreciate it as you can tell I am a newbie when it comes to this.

Thanks again

I was just rolling up my sleeves for the buzz/whine lecture when it turns out that’s normal microphone background hiss. It’s a little on the high side in your case, but it’s perfectly normal. If you do speak, do you sound normal except for the ocean behind you?

Does this clip sound like gentle rain in the trees when you play it, or do you hear Frying Mosquitoes? You said hum. Do hear refrigerator motor hum in there, too?

Are there any gain or volume controls in either hardware or software? Typically, USB microphones have wimpy volume to guard against overload, but many of them have adjustments. You can also adjust things in Windows which puts you right out of my world.

Download and play this sound clip. It’s perfectly recorded with no noise or distortion. If you hear problems, then your computer playback system may be damaged.


The clip you provided sounded perfect and there was no problem with playback.

When I record my voice it sounds fine, clear, clean and crisp but with the constant hiss in the background.

I could use the noise reduction filter in audacity but I am unsure what settings to use.
But was told to try and remove the background noises at the source not in post mix editing.

Noise Reduction (db): 22
Sensitivity (db): 0.02
Frequency Smoothing (hz): 120
Attack/decay time (secs): 0.15

I am sure those settings are not optimal as I am totally new.

Hiss is a real problem although in moderate amounts it can suppressed, sometimes enough to make the performance pass. Please note that I’m using all soft and gooshy words. The worst thing about Noise Removal is its name. That suggests it’s possible to Remove Noise with the tool. It’s not. A much more accurate name is Noise Reduction.

I think it warns you not to go for a studio recording right away. It’s not going to turn your noisy, echoey room into Glen Glenn Recording Studios. You can try that and seem to actually succeed, but then the show voices may get all bubbly and honky. Noise Removal is a trade-off tool. You try to get rid of as much noise as possible without damaging voices, which snaps you back to the comment of making a perfect recording first, then clean it up a little later… if you need to.

Rather than try to noise remove a four hour show (which will take weeks) select a smaller portion and do your experiments on that. Play the test by selecting a portion slightly bigger than the reduced segment. Play the whole thing and you’ll be able to hear how much work the tool is doing. Noisy, noisy, clean, clean, clean, noisy, noisy. Edit > UNDO and try different values.


Someone up the forum discovered that his microphone had a software package with volume controls on it and his weak voice and hiss problem vanished.


I hear that dynamic microphones are better at not pickup as much background noises vs condenser microphones is this true? If so is there anyone you would recommend over the Blue Yeti? again I must use usb as I have no mixer.

No. The only serious difference between the two is in very subtle nuances of voice. Your voice pressure has to horse around a metal plate and a coil of thin wire in a Dynamic microphone whereas in a Condenser microphone your voice just has to deform a whisper thin metal foil.

How they interact with the outside world (noise reduction, handling noises, directionality, etc) is entirely up to the design of the microphone body. For one really bad example, the crappy microphone in your laptop is a condenser microphone. An Electret Microphone is a type of condenser.

The old news gathering microphone the Electro-Voice 635A is an omni-directional Dynamic (attachment).

If you have a very noisy room with echoes, you might try gamer headsets rather than “studio” microphones. Putting the microphone close to your lips (carefully) goes a very long way in suppressing the dogs barking and the refrigerator going on and off. One of the other posters on the forum is doing pro (paid) voice work with a Snowball, but he’s doing it in his soundproofed closet.

Recording voices cleanly is harder than it looks.

Do you have the pattern and gain switches on the back of the Yeti set correctly? You should select position 3 (cardioid) and make sure you’re talking into the front of the mic. If you’re not, your voice is going to get lost and that may be where your noise is coming from.

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